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VIPs: Very Important Passengers
London, England
Photo: Peter Nixon
Gandalf, the horse of Eventing legend Mark Todd (NZL) is being fed carrots right before take off
With many horses taking part in the Olympic equestrian events already safely at Sha Tin - the remaining 85 will arrive between 44 and 6 August.

Indeed, an FEI crew was given the rare opportunity to be present during the departure of 13 horses from Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam and 24 horses from Stansted Airport near London. From the arrival of the horses from their quarantines - some personally acccompanied by their riders who could barely speak so moved were they by the fact that their "boys" and "girls" were travelling all by themselves like grown ups - to their unloading, pre-flight exercise and llight snacks, loading into specially approved flight stalls, loading into the aircraft and all the way to the spectacular take off - we saw it all. The horses trravel all by themselves? Not quite. They are accompanied by experienced crews of grooms especially trained to take care of their inmates in flight conditions.

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